Summer 2018 Legal Internship

The newly established Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University is looking for summer legal interns. We want creative, motivated, and committed law students to join us in the defense of the freedoms of speech and the press. You’ll get to do ground-breaking First Amendment litigation and to help us in the early stages of building an exciting new free-speech advocacy and research organization. 

About us

The Knight First Amendment Institute works to preserve and expand the freedoms of speech and the press in the digital age through strategic litigation, research, and public education. We’ll tackle a wide range of issues including free speech on social media, net neutrality, government surveillance, intermediary liability, the rights of whistleblowers, the right of journalists to protect their sources, the right of citizens to record and broadcast police activity, encryption, machine speech, and government transparency.

What you’ll do

Your primary responsibility as a legal intern will be to support our litigation. You’ll work alongside the Institute’s attorneys on all aspects of our litigation, including the exploration of new lawsuits, the research and analysis of legal questions, the development of litigation strategy, and the drafting of factual and legal memoranda, affidavits, and briefs.


The summer legal internship is open to law students who will have completed their first year of law school before the internship begins. Applicants should possess excellent research, writing, and communication skills, and have a deep commitment to human rights principles and to the freedoms of speech and the press in particular.

The internship is full-time, and we’ll give preference to those who can commit to a ten-week term.

How to apply

Send the following to

  • a cover letter explaining your interest in the internship, including a description of any relevant life or work experience,
  • a resume,
  • the contact information for two references,
  • an official or unofficial law-school transcript, and
  • one or two writing samples, at least one of which should include legal analysis.

Because we’ll make decisions on a rolling basis, we encourage you to submit your application as early as possible. First-year and LL.M. students may submit their applications by January 19, 2018. We’ll pay a modest stipend to students who don’t receive outside funding or course credit.